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Monitoring Distance Education: A Brief to Support Decision-Making in Bangladesh and Other Low- and Lower-Middle Income Countries

Kaye, Tom; Groeneveld, Caspar; Bashir, Amreen

On 17 March 2020, Bangladeshi schools were closed to restrict the spread of Covid-19. Overnight, an education system supporting more than 36 million learners pivoted to distance learning (⇡World Bank, no date). The government worked in close collaboration with other stakeholders to deploy print, radio, TV, mobile, and online resources to provide educational continuity.

The UK FCDO Bangladesh team requested a topic brief from the EdTech Hub to provide guidance on monitoring distance education in Bangladesh. Specifically, the Hub was requested to provide recommendations, based on lessons learned internationally, on how the government could put in place systems to improve the monitoring of distance learning to support strategic decision-making.

The EdTech Hub team conducted a desk review to understand how to best monitor distance education in Bangladesh. Phase one was a rapid review of Bangladesh’s education system. Phase two examined global literature and case studies to identify strategies used to monitor distance education. The review traversed South Asia and other low-income countries globally. This brief focuses solely on monitoring distance learning. It does not attempt to explore modalities for distance education or look at the impact of school closures.

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